With a lyric like, “talk about my underpants inside your underpants,” it’s clear that Happy Cat Jay wrote his debut single with a little humor in mind. Yet that doesn’t stop “Underpants” from being a hot and sweaty delight: To the contrary, Happy Cat Jay’s dynamic introductory song lures us in with a genuine and mysterious charm that keeps listeners hooked ’til the very end.
People talk about my underpants
inside your underpants,
People talk about my underpants
inside your underpants.
Listen: “Underpants” – Happy Cat Jay
Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering the music video for Happy Cat Jay’s “Underpants,” a juicy, soulful song as well as a critical satire that captures the utter incredulity of celebrity fascination. Getting his start working with the likes of PC Music and Alexndr London, Happy Cat Jay has introduced his own witty, captivating artistry this year through an unnervingly infectious, suave electro-R&B song that makes it way from our heads, down.
“It was important to me that my debut track as a solo artist was something fun. It’s also the first track I’ve released with my own vocals on and I wanted that to feel like a light-hearted experience,” the artist explains. “Musically, I really wanted to front it with this faux-sexy vibe. But I want people to move to this, preferably with a big grin on their face. The song was written from the perspective of a big celebrity, questioning why people are so fascinated by the publicising of their private lives and why the media loves to create the boundary between a celebrity’s life and everyone else’s life.”
As someone who personally despises the celebrity phenomenon and loves songs like Bowie‘s “Space Oddity,” which call out the general public’s seeming obsession (fed to us, of course, by our adoring and attention-hungry media), Happy Cat Jay’s mixture of sarcasm and good feeling is easily enticing. His music makes a formidable statement, which is more than can be said for most artists, especially on their debuts.
Let me take a mechanical picture,
Build your form into heavenly scripture,
I reinforced myself so I could love you deeper,
So I could love you deeper.
So I could talk about your underpants
inside my underpants,
Because your underpants
inside my underpants.
Oh no no no no no no
The music video finds Happy Cat Jay playing both the role of celebrity and celebrity worshiper/stalker. We watch the interaction as one follows the other around all day, and the results are comically delightful. “I conceived the initial idea for this video with writer Tom Stenton, who I worked with on ‘Swifties’, a play at Theatre N16 about two Taylor Swift fans,” Happy Cat Jay recalls. “The track is kind of waxing lyrical about celebrity fetishism through the ages and in Tom’s own words: ‘I was just trying to present the silliness of celebrity worship on a shoestring budget…'”
Jay continues: I’ve never acted before so it felt right to present these ridiculous characters in parallel scenarios within the safety of my own music and then bury the track in this kind of meta-world where Happy Cat Jay is a total wanker….. Basically, I’m excited to debut with something that’s tongue-in-cheek. I also have to give a shout out to the other (actually legitimate) actors and the technical/production team (Kick Line Films) who made the creating of this film possible, super fun and really comfortable. You guys were all wicked, and thank you so much!”
When they come let’s make space on the fire,
Draw me close and fulfil the desire,
You drew a chalk outline so you could bleed me drier,
So you could bleed me drier.
So you could bleed inside my underpants.
The video’s director sheds more light on the video: “JP had previously composed the soundtrack for one of our old short films, however collaborating this time round was a completely different kettle of fish. Most of our films are drama based, or enigmatic experimental shorts; working on a video with this sort of subject matter was a really good laugh and very liberating. It allowed us to experiment and really see how far we could stretch the bizarre humour in relation to such a playful song.”
“Underpants” is fun, different, and frankly delightful. Few artists push the envelope with such ease, but Happy Cat Jay seems tailor-made to do just that – one might say it suits him well…
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photo © 2017